Summer is a wonderful time to help kids learn about the natural world around them, especially small creatures that are easy to observe in our own backyards and parks, like butterflies, worms and bugs!
Here's an idea to stoke your child's interest in nature and art at the same time.
DIY Insect Observation Art Project
Optional preparation: Go to the library together to check out a book about bugs. Here's a list from the Frogs, Snails and Puppy Dog Tails blog to get you started: Children's Books About Bugs. Try to find the answers to these questions together: What makes insects different from other animals? How big is the biggest insect? What about the smallest? Which one is your favorite?
Take a nature walk and do some close observation of bugs, using a magnifying glass if you have one, or just getting close to the ground. Let them be the scientist, and you can be the assistant! Ask your child what they notice about the bugs they find (color, shape, body parts etc.).
Write down notes or make quick sketches of your favorites.
Get out your paints, modeling clay, colored pencils or Wool Felt Bug Kit, and make your own creepy-crawly friends! Your child might be interested in copying the real insects exactly, or maybe they want to invent their own species. Either way, it will be a lot of fun!
Make a habitat for your bugs. In the photos above and below, we decorated our packaging with Artterro paper for grass, and glued on some real sticks. You could also use a jar or a shoebox, or simply draw your own habitat.
Tip: Try to keep this project as open-ended as possible. Your trip to the library may inspire interest about a different subject altogether. Go with it! Or maybe the flowers and trees will interest your child more than the bugs. Great! The important thing is for curiosity to lead the activity.
For more fun bug crafts, check out our newest Pinterest board!
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